Newspaper distribution has stabilised barring few cities, say print publishers
In a joint statement released by the newspaper publications, Dainik Bhaskar, Dainik Jagran, Eenadu, Hindustan, Patrika Group, Amar Ujala, Daily Thanthi, Sakshi, Dinamalar, Deccan Herald, Hindustan Times and Divya Bhaskar, have stated that newspaper distribution has stabilised in most parts of the country, barring a few cities. The coalition of newspaper publishers have stated that newspaper distribution has been categorised as an essential commodity by the Government for the right reasons.
The statement notes that, "In the early days of the lockdown, like most businesses, we too struggled with setting up production processes which would have to be compliant with the very notion that newspapers were safe and not carriers of virus. We had to move swiftly to address the sanitisation at the plant floors, education, safety and sanitisation of the vendor network and the safety of our large workforce. Many of you in some of the cities are finding some disruption in receiving the newspaper, however the newspaper distribution across India has largely stabilised, ranging from 75-90 per cent of the base number of February, with the exception of a few cities."
It adds, "We have undertaken education and sensitisation drives with our reader base to apprise them of the safety measures we have deployed at every level to make the newspaper safe in their hands."
The statement also notes that given the reader has a greater amount of time on their hands, time spent on reading newspapers has overall gone up by 50%.
Newspaper publishers faced significant disruption in distribution, especially in Mumbai, in the early days of the lockdown until April 1.